Kevin Bieksa
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Sportsnet Analyst Kevin Bieksa Rips Sheldon Keefe

Published December 31, 2023 at 8:35 PM

On Saturday night Kevin Bieksa was incensed at the Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe in regards to Keefe benching a player for poor defensive play.

Keefe's new planned approach to the defensive end of the ice

Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe has a new "low tolerance" policy for defensive mistakes. The plan started Saturday night as Keefe scratched fourth-line centre, David Kampf.

Sheldon Keefe says there is going to be «less tolerance» for defensive mistakes going forward and cites David Kampf as a scratch as an example of that tonight. Pontus Holmberg will draw in.

The Leafs lost Saturday night, but only by a score of 3-2, with the goal being an empty netter. Perhaps his message worked.

Kevin Bieksa is not happy to scratch a forward

On the Sportsnet panel, Kevin Bieksa lit up Sheldon Keefe's new plan for defensive accountability.

"It's another excuse we're making for the goaltending. It's another bad goal by Samsonov.

"You're picking the wrong guy. You're picking Kampf, a guy who is your number one defensive center who makes a million great defensive plays on a team with a lot of guys that don't make a lot of great plays with the puck.

How many turnovers have there been tonight? Has the message been sent? Or is it just we are gonna pick on this one guy and hopefully everyone else gets in line?"

It is clear that Bieksa points the finger at goaltender Ilya Samsonov and is quite upset that others are taking the blame.

It would be wise of Keefe to make sure any player on the Leafs squad can get disciplined and does not just play favourites. If this new decision from Keefe leads to more wins with a lower goals against many people will be happy.

As Read On Hockey Feed - Kevin Bieksa calls out Sheldon Keefe on Saturday night
December 31   |   1392 answers
Sportsnet Analyst Kevin Bieksa Rips Sheldon Keefe

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